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30th Jun 2022

Amanda Holden loves builders wolf-whistling at her and hopes they’re still doing it when she’s 70

Kieran Galpin

‘I want a builder to give me a little ‘oi oi’ when I walk past’

Amanda Holden has said she hopes builders wolf-whistle at her when she’s in her 70s – something commonly thought of as sexual harassment.

The 51-year-old TV personality may be a long way from 70 but she’s already thinking about how she’d like to look at that age. Speaking to Woman’s Weekly as reported in the Mirror, the Britain’s Got Talent judge said she “doesn’t give a damn” about the criticism she sometimes shows too much skin.

Recalling a recent photo of Charlie’s Angels actress Jaclyn Smith, who happens to be 76, she said: “I thought, ‘That’s what I’m going to look like in my 70s’. I still want to get wolf whistles in my 70s. I want a builder to give me a little ‘oi oi’ when I walk past.”

“You have to ignore everybody else because you own your body. The only way to change things is to not give a damn,” she added, saying she wants to be “tooted at” when walking the dog.

Wolf-whistling, sometimes called cat calling, is described as: “The act of shouting harassing and often sexually suggestive, threatening, or derisive comments at someone publicly.”

The act is widely condemned across the world, with one in five girls experiencing street harassment during lockdown alone.

A YouGov poll from 2021 suggests that the UK public agree that wolf-whistling should be made a criminal offence. A surprising 69 per cent think it should be a crime, compared with the 17 per cent that don’t – but there are people who think it’s a compliment, like actress Joanna Lumley, who questioned, “What’s wrong with that?” in 2016.

Still, the effects are still very much felt today. In 2016, Poppy Smart, 23, sought help after being continuously harassed and cat called by a group of men on a building site. Smart was criticised in the press, with many saying she overreacted, according to The Independent.

However in response, she explained: “I don’t think this is a case of ‘PC gone mad’ it’s addressing an issue that many women and men face every day, that makes your skin crawl and invades your personal space, and, moreover, is an unnecessary cause of stress and embarrassment for some.”

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